New Echo & Microsoft Products for Christmas 2019
It’s the siren call all technocentric nerds long to hear, whispered on the wind: “New gadgets!”
Yep, that’s right. As we gear up for yet another holiday season, Amazon and Microsoft have just announced a swathe of amazing new gadgets, each brimming with sleek, ergonomically-optimized, battery-powered goodness. So let us delve together into the bounties of yet another glorious gadget season.
What do you need to know about these ear-enhancing beauties? They’re available at a fantastic price, feature superb noise-canceling tech (including “passthrough” mode), and they’ll integrate seamlessly with your smart assistant of choice. They could well be the Apple Earbud killer.
Echo Loop – $130
Picture the wisdom-dispensing amazingness of your Amazon Alexa. Now shrink that down to the size of a signet ring. Bam, you just invented the Echo Loop — only you didn’t, because Amazon thought of it first. This ridiculously compact smart assistant can talk to you through tiny speakers or send notification messages through your phone.
Rings not your thing? Echo Frames are the same tech, only built right into a pretty gosh-darn stylish pair o’ spectacles. And no, this is not Google Glass revisited! No clunky frames, no creepy camera thingy — just a James Bond styled piece of quality eye-framing jewelry that most nerds (particularly of the masculine persuasion) will love.
There’s no shortage of amazing, killer quality speakers on the market these days. But Echo Studio speakers significantly up the ante with studio-quality sound, a compact footprint, and technology designed to synch up with your home theater for effortless surround sound. Could this be the Sonos Slayer of legend? We think it may well be.
Okay, okay. The Echo Dot is yesterday’s potatoes. But this compact smart speaker doubles down on the convenience factor by integrating an LED display that can show the time, outdoor temperature, or other simple graphical information. This thing is oddly cute to look at too! It’s like a small, extremely knowledgable muppet. Great kid’s gift.
Speaking of cool stuff for kids, stash an Echo Glow into their stocking this year. This multicolor smart lamp for kids connects to an existing Echo device. A simple voice command will change its color or brightness, and it’ll even sync with the youthful stereophonics, converting a humdrum kid’s bedroom into a world-class home disco (sort of). The Echo Glow is, quite simply, the most tricked out night light money can buy. If Tony Stark had a kid, this would be that kid’s night light.
And we can’t finish without the big-ticket item…
Apple folks might hate us for this, but we think this may well be the best laptop on the market right now. It’s blazing fast, it’s specced up the wazoo, and has a huge trackpad (making it great for creative work). The Surface might be the first device we’ve seen where the whole laptop/tablet hybrid idea actually works in practice. If you’re not a Microsoft person, go into a store and try a demo model. You might change your mind.
And while you’re perusing Microsoft’s wares, jump online and take a look at the Microsoft Neo and Duo, both scheduled for a 2020 holiday release. Both offer something fresh ’n versatile, and may well be the drool-worthiest gadget of next holiday season.